REVIEW: THE THREE TREMORS – “The Three Tremors”
First and foremost, “flying witch puppet” vocals abound! The aptly applied phrase coined by my wife to describe falsetto metal shrieks (derived from the vampire puppet musical in the Judd Apatow comedy ‘Forgetting Sarah Marshall’) is a lynchpin of the band’s calling card. Unfortunately, the unrestrained vocal acrobatics while impressive make for a chaotic listening experience; such that the record’s most memorable moments come when Conklin’s slightly uneven tenor rises above the din.
“Bullets for the Damned” sets the template for a collection that rarely strays from the path. Following an up-tempo intro that is all shredding and double-kick, Owen’s begins things in earnest, before harmonized witch puppet vocals kick in at 0.25 and rarely relent. Typical of the set, the song marries vocal and guitar pyrotechnics to a formulaic song structure, out of the box metal lyrics, and compressed-to-hell modern metal production.
“Fly or Die”, the record’s “Aces High” stands out with its catchy choruses, unrelenting tempo, and a World War II aeronautics theme. Boasting one of the sets most interesting song structures, it leans heavily on soundbites of Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s “Infamy Speech” and emerges as one of the most memorable things here.
Around the halfway mark “King of Monsters”, which is somehow not about Godzilla, is notable in that it incorporates a little mid-tempo chug. A welcome change from the unrelenting pace of the first several songs, it kicks off a string of tunes that stand at the heart of the set. From the arpeggiated intro of “Lust of the Blade” to the homophonic and catchy riff and melody of “Sonic Suicide”, the records veer into more traditional metal territory is a lauding success.
I would be remiss to not mention the lyrical ridiculousness of the title track. The overblown song that casts the front-men as “sonic ninjas” that “can wake the dead” with the “the thunder of three microphones,” makes Manowar’s collective body of work seem positively profound in comparison.
Everything comes together; however, on closer “Wrath of Asgard”. Boasting the most effective division of labor so far, the song benefits from the extra space allotted to each vocalist. Replete with rhythmic oar stroke gang vocals, the song sails the record triumphantly into the sunset on a swift NWOBHM gallop.
The terrible pun of the band name aside, ‘The Three Tremors’ is a fun, predictably over the top collection of melodic old-school metal tunes. Comprised of vocalists Tim “Ripper” Owens (Judas Priest, Iced Earth), Harry “The Tyrant” Conklin (Jag Panzer), and Sean “The Hell Destroyer” Peck (Cage, Death Dealer), their self-titled record is a lightweight “tip of the helmet” to their influences—mainly ‘Painkiller’ era Judas Priest.